We would like to ensure that you are still receiving content that you find useful – please confirm that you would like to continue to receive ILO newsletters.
18 September 2013
On September 3 2013 the Kassel Higher Administrative Court(1) announced its ruling on claims filed by local government authorities and inhabitants of South and Rhine Hessen affected by the decision in favour of a southerly bypass – departure procedures from Runways 25C and 25L at Frankfurt Airport. The plaintiffs requested that the decision be ruled unlawful. These claims were upheld by the court.
The Ninth Division of the adjudicating court ruled that the decision in favour of the southerly bypass was based partially on an inaccurate appraisal of the facts and therefore did not fulfil the legal criteria necessary for establishing landing and take-off procedures.
The decision in favour of a southerly bypass had been based on a statement made by the Federal Supervisory Authority for Air Navigation Services, as well as documents submitted by the air traffic control authorities in which certain considerations were cited as being relevant.
Apart from limiting the number of people exposed to aircraft noise as far as possible, the chosen route was supposed to allow parallel operations which are independent of missed approaches (go-around manoeuvres) heading westwards towards the northwest landing strip and departures from the runway Startbahn West 18 heading southwards. Independent parallel operations are essential for the safe, efficient handling of the air traffic volumes specified in the planning approval notice for the expansion scheme, which is based on an estimated 126 aircraft movements per hour. Despite overlapping with the departure route from the Startbahn West runway, the southerly bypass was supposed to allow independent parallel operations with the help of a radio navigation system.
However, at the oral hearing the court concluded that independent operation of the southerly bypass by means of the radio navigation system was not feasible and there was no evidence that it would become feasible in the foreseeable future.
Since the safe, efficient handling of air traffic – the primary objective of the Air Traffic Act and a prerequisite for justifying high levels of aircraft noise pollution – is not achievable this way, the main basis on which the decision was taken proved to be inaccurate, and the decision itself was thus erroneous and therefore arbitrary.
Regardless of the decision, the southerly bypass can stay in operation for as long as the judgment is not final and definitive, which can take several months.
For further information on this topic please contact Ulrich Steppler at Arnecke Siebold Rechtsanwälte by telephone (+49 69 97 98 85 0), fax (+49 69 97 98 85 85) or email (email@example.com).
The materials contained on this website are for general information purposes only and are subject to the disclaimer.
ILO is a premium online legal update service for major companies and law firms worldwide. In-house corporate counsel and other users of legal services, as well as law firm partners, qualify for a free subscription.